I am pleased the Home Secretary confirmed yesterday that the government have not abandoned their commitment to control immigration. The one message that came out loud and clear from the EU referendum was that voters want to see the government put more effort into controlling immigration. This does not mean no immigration and it does not mean that those who want to see immigration controlled fail to recognise the important role immigrants play in our country.
It is not enough just to rely on leaving the EU as a means to reducing immigration. When we leave the EU we will be able to reduce immigration into the U.K. from the other 27 EU countries. The government is to consult on further steps to reduce the number of people who come here from outside the EU while making sure we still welcome and attract the brightest and best who contribute to the British economy.
These proposals will look for the first time at whether our student immigration rules should be tailored to the quality of the course and the quality of the institution. They will also examine whether the UK should introduce US-style rules to make sure people who come here are not doing jobs that could be done by British workers.
The government clearly recognise the need to get net migration back to sustainable levels – helping build confidence in our immigration system and relieving pressure on our schools, hospitals and infrastructure – whilst ensuring the system continues to attract those most able to benefit our country.